Pet owners live longer

Did you know that pet owners are more likely to live longer than people in pet-free households? Pets reduce your risk of developing cardiovascular disease probably because they get you up and moving; they are there for you in good times and bad, improving your mental wellbeing; and you’re more likely to be aware of your own health by looking after another’s.

Pets prevent loneliness

How can you be lonely with an adoring dog looking up at you, or a… well, a cat demanding food looking up at you? Companionship with animals is especially beneficial for the elderly community, who often look to their pets for companionship and love.

Keep fit with your pet

Whilst it depends on age and breed, the average dog needs at least an hour of activity every day. So a daily walk with your pooch should leave you with better mood and energy with all those endorphins flying around plus you’ll be well on your way to getting fit. And if you get a cat with the right temperament and you’re brave enough, some felines can even be trained to walk on a lead!

Pets teach children compassion and responsibility

Teaching compassion and responsibility to children is such an important part of their emotional development. Pets can help with other aspects of development too, as kids learn to recognise and understand body language and non-verbal cues and how to respect boundaries of others. It’s also a great way to teach children how to look after another living being and is a great source of pride and love for many kids!

Pets reduce stress

Numerous studies have concluded the same thing – that owning pets can reduce your stress levels significantly. And you can see it for yourself! Try stroking your pet next time you feel stressed – you’ll instantly feel calmer and so will your four-legged friend!

Unconditional love

Animals make great listeners, precisely because they have no idea what you are saying to them, they just love you! And that kind of uncomplicated utter loyalty and friendship makes pet ownership priceless.

Great photos for your phone!

Who doesn’t love a goofy dog picture mid-sneeze or pictures of your friend’s new kitten? Either way your photos will mean your pet always stays with you, whether you’re just heading to work or going on holiday.

Make you laugh

There’s a reason why cat videos are amongst the most popular searches on YouTube. Animals can be hilarious and will provide hours of entertainment!

Pets and owners look after each other

Service animals are not only exceptionally well-trained members of the family, but for many people living with disabilities they are an absolute life-line to the outside world. You can learn more about service dogs and the work they do at www.assistancedogs.org.au

Meet new people

Meet fellow dog-walkers on your route or join a cat fanciers club. You can also find loads of forums online where you can trade tips and talk about your pet with other people who share your interests. Best of all, owning a pet means you’ll get to meet the dedicated team at your local vet practice who are animal lovers just like you!